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Retrospect has caused false indication of free disk space?


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Hi all,

 

After I ran a couple of backups to my external Maxtor hard disk, cancelled the backups and deleted the backup files, there is almost no free disk space on the hard disk, even though the files on the hard disk take up apprx. 35 GB less than the size of the hard disk.

 

The size of the hard disk is 233 GB. When I select all folders on the hard disk, right click and choose Properties, I see that the files and folders take up 197 GB. But if I right click on the drive in This Computer, the Used Space is 232 GB out of 233 GB, and free space is about 1 GB. Obviously, the size of the files should be the same when I right click the files/folders themselves or if I right click the drive. This discrepancy between the size of the files (197 GB) when I right click the files themselves, and the size of the files when I right click the drive (232 GB), first appeared after I made a couple of test backups that I cancelled before they finished. I deleted the partial backup files from the drive, but apparantly they still take up space somehow.

 

I have run Scandisk, I have emptied the waste basket, and I have looked for hidden files by removing the mark in "Hide protected system files" in settings for Windows Explorer. In other words, I have done everything to find the mysterious files that take up space. Can anyone help?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Regards

Dennis Nielsen

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Hi

 

Retrospect counts 1 megabyte as 1024 bytes. Other programs count a megabyte as 1000 bytes. These are both correct ways of displaying the size. That could make up the difference right there.

 

Right click on the my computer icon, go to properties and turn off system restore for the external drive.

 

How did you delete backup files from the drive? If you just threw them away chances are the whole backup set is now incomplete.

 

Thanks

Nate

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Hi Nate,

 

The difference is much greater than that - besides, it is Windows that is stating the difference (either 197 GB or 232 GB, a difference of 35 GB - for the very same hard disk!).

 

As you know, there are two ways to see the total size of the files on a hard disk. You can either select all folders and files in the root directory of the hard disk, right click, and choose Properties. When I do this, the size of the files on the hard disk is reported to be 197 GB. The other way is to right click the icon for the drive itself, in This Computer, and choose Properties. You then get a pie diagram showing the relationship between used space and free space. When I do this, used space is stated at 232 GB (this obviously ought to be the same as the size of all files - in this case the 197 GB).

 

Once I deleted the backup set by making a new Recycle backup (this way, Retrospect deletes the old files, as you know), and a couple of times I deleted the backup files by selecting them in This Computer and simply pressing Delete. I know this makes the set incomplete, but it was only a test at that point. But the problem arose after I did this - it is as if the backup files are not "totally" deleted. They cannot be seen when I browse the hard disk with This Computer, but they still take up space, and I cannot remove them, since I cannot see them!

 

System restore is already disabled for this drive.

 

Hope you can help.

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Hi

 

When Retrospect deletes files in a recycle backup they are gone for good.

 

I don't think this has anything to do with Retrospect. Here is why:

 

Using the two methods you described I checked the data size on my D drive that contains _no_ Retrospect backup data. They were 8% different in size for the exact same drive. You are seeing a 16% difference.

 

I suspect the problem occurs when you select all files and folder and go to properties. Windows is excluding some data in the calculation.

 

Remember also that file size on disk and actual file size in bytes are usually very different. I would bet that selecting all files and clicking properties shows acutal file size in bytes. Right clicking on the drive shows total disk space used.

 

Thanks

Nate

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To start with your last point: When I select all files and click properties, I get a window that shows both actual file size and used disk space - and these two figures are not very different (less than 1 percent).

 

True, Windows most likely excludes some files when this method is used, but since my external hard drive (the one in question) is not a system (boot) drive, the number of system files would be very limited. I also have apprx. 8 % difference on my internal hard drive (boot drive) which holds my swap (page) file, windows installation and so forth, but it seems illogical to me that the difference should be twice that on a non-system drive.

 

And my main point is: This problem was not there before I made the test backups. Retrospect itself is sensing a difference - before the problem, I could backup on the drive without problems. Now Retrospect barely starts before it comes up with a message saying that the disk is full. This is the way I found out that something fishy was going on in the first place. And I know for a fact that the figure for free disk space was much greater before I started the test backups than now, even with the test backup files deleted.

 

I am at a loss to understand how this can be resolved, so I still hope you (or someone else) can come up with a good idea!

 

Regards

Dennis

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I'm not sure, actually - as far as I remember, I set a figure close to the free space on the drive at that time - apprx. 35 GB. How is this important?

 

Anyway, in the meantime I gave up and repartitioned the Maxtor drive, which now seems to be working fine again. However, another problem has arisen:

 

I set Retrospect to use software compression, and during the first 10-20 minutes of a 2-hour backup process, the progress window shows a compression ratio of about 10-20 percent. The ratio then begins to decline, and about halfway through it reaches 0 and remains there. Why does the compression seem to work in the beginning, only to zero out later? Even if only the first files were compressible, the figure should remain above zero.

 

Thanks,

Dennis Nielsen

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Hi

 

Retrospect reports the free space that you made available to it. I think that may be the source of the confusion here.

 

Compression is based on the average compression ratio of all files in the backup. Files that are already compressed (jpeg, avi,mp3,wav,dll etc) cannot be compressed any further and so they have a 0% compression ratio. If files like these make up a large portion of your backup the compression ratio will appear very low.

 

The bottom line is Retrospect compresses the files that it can compress and leaves the others as is.

 

Thanks

Nate

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Hi Nate,

 

Thanks for your patience... once again, a different problem: I wanted to make a recovery CD, but I get this error:

 

Executing Prepare for Disaster Recovery at 12-09-2005 09:10

From Backup Set xxx, Snapshot xxx (C:) 12-09-2005 00:30

To CD-ROM image file Restore xxx.iso...

Not enough disk space for selected files

(short by about 4.040,1 G).

12-09-2005 09:11:37: 1 execution errors

Can't continue execution, error -1115 (disk full)

 

I'm not sure which disk Retrospect sees as full - both my C drive (where it is storing the iso file) and the external Maxtor drive have at least the 4 GB it claims to need. I suspect it is the iso image that lacks space, which would be pretty obvious since a CD image can only contain 700 MB. But in that case, why is Retrospect trying to put so many files into the CD image?

 

For your information, my Windows installation is placed on a "recovery partition" on the built-in hard drive of my HP desktop computer, could this be what is confusing Retrospect - and if so, is there anything I can do about it? HP computers do not come with a Windows CD, only this recovery partition on the hard drive.

 

If I can't make a recovery cd, is this a major problem? If I ever need to restore my computer, could I just start with restoring Windows from the HP recovery partition, then install Retrospect, and finally execute a Retrospect restore with the backup set I want to use? I mean, do I need to boot from a Retrospect restore cd in order to make a complete system restore with a Retrospect backup set, or is this just a convenience that makes it easier, since the Retrospect recovery cd contains both Windows and Retrospect?

 

Thanks again,

Dennis

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Quote:

Hi Nate,

 

 

 

Thanks for your patience... once again, a different problem: I wanted to make a recovery CD, but I get this error:

 

 

 

Executing Prepare for Disaster Recovery at 12-09-2005 09:10

 

From Backup Set xxx, Snapshot xxx (C:) 12-09-2005 00:30

 

To CD-ROM image file Restore xxx.iso...

 

Not enough disk space for selected files

 

(short by about 4.040,1 G).

 

12-09-2005 09:11:37: 1 execution errors

 

Can't continue execution, error -1115 (disk full)

 

 

 

I'm not sure which disk Retrospect sees as full - both my C drive (where it is storing the iso file) and the external Maxtor drive have at least the 4 GB it claims to need. I suspect it is the iso image that lacks space, which would be pretty obvious since a CD image can only contain 700 MB. But in that case, why is Retrospect trying to put so many files into the CD image?

 

 

 

For your information, my Windows installation is placed on a "recovery partition" on the built-in hard drive of my HP desktop computer, could this be what is confusing Retrospect - and if so, is there anything I can do about it? HP computers do not come with a Windows CD, only this recovery partition on the hard drive.

 


 

 

 

This is the answer given by Nate to this problem. But then, as you say, you don't have a Windows Recovery CD. Sorry I don't know how to create a link to a previous post on this forum.

 

 

 

Re: disaster recovery iso file too big [Re: Jalice]

 

#54114 - 03/28/05 06:08 PM Edit Reply Quote Quick Reply

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi

 

 

 

Make sure you use the i386 folder from your windows install CD when you create the Disaster recovery image. Don't use the i386 folder that is on your hard disk.

 

 

 

Thanks

 

Nate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quote:

 

 

If I can't make a recovery cd, is this a major problem? If I ever need to restore my computer, could I just start with restoring Windows from the HP recovery partition, then install Retrospect, and finally execute a Retrospect restore with the backup set I want to use?

 


 

 

 

I would say your plan will work just great.

 

 

 

Quote:

I mean, do I need to boot from a Retrospect restore cd in order to make a complete system restore with a Retrospect backup set, or is this just a convenience that makes it easier, since the Retrospect recovery cd contains both Windows and Retrospect?

 


 

 

 

The answer is No, you do not need to boot from a Retrospect restore cd in order to make a complete system restore with a Retrospect backup set. HP's Recovery Partition will bring your computer to its "out of the box" condition, which is all you need, with your Retrospect software and your Retrospect Backup.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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